Egyptians blame military for deadly soccer riot

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"This is a complete crime," said Abbas Mekhimar, head of parliament's defense committee. "This is part of the scenario of fueling chaos against Egypt."

More details about what happened after Wednesday's match emerged as mourners gathered outside the morgue in Cairo and the headquarters for the Al-Ahly club.

Witnesses said Al-Masry supporters, armed with knives, sticks and stones, chased Al-Ahly players and fans, who ran toward the exits and up the stands to escape while lines of riot police in the stadium largely did nothing to intervene. As many Al-Ahly fans crowded into the corridor leading out of the stadium, they were trapped, with the doors at the other end locked.

At one point, the stadium lights went out, plunging it into darkness. The TV sportscaster announcing the match said authorities shut them off to "calm the situation."

"Layers of people" were "stuck over each other because there was no other exit," Al-Ahly fan Ahmed Ghaffar tweeted on Thursday. "We were between two choices, either death coming from behind us, or the closed doors."

He said Al-Masry fans beat Al-Ahly fans who fell on the floor.

Al-Masry fan, Mohammed Mosleh, who posted his account on Facebook, said he saw "thugs with weapons" on his side in the stadium where police presence was meager.

"This was unbelievable," he said. "We were supposed to be celebrating, not killing people. We defeated Al-Ahly, something I saw twice only in my lifetime. All the people were happy. Nobody expected this."

The Interior Ministry said 74 people died, including one police officer, and 248 were injured, 14 of them police. A local health official initially said 1,000 people were injured and it was not clear how severely. Security forces arrested 47 people for involvement in the violence, the statement said.

Health ministry official Hisham Sheha said the deaths were caused by stabs by sharp tools, brain hemorrhage and concussions. "All those carried to hospitals were already dead bodies," Sheha told state TV.

A number of political parties called on the Egyptian parliament to pass no-confidence vote against the government of el-Ganzouri, a Mubarak-era politician appointed by the much-criticized ruling military council.

Osama Yassin, head of sports committee in parliament, said the parliament holds the interior minister, who is in charge of police, responsible for the violence. He also demanded ouster of Prosecutor-General Mahmoud Abdel-Meguid.

The U.S. and Britain expressed condolences.

"I urge the Egyptian authorities to set up a transparent inquiry to uncover the causes of the tragedy and hold those responsible to account," Britain's Middle East minister Alistair Burt said.

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Associated Press writer Aya Batrawy contributed to this report.

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